So the world is a crazy place right now. One of the things I hold dearest is a positive ideology. In general, I believe the world is a beautiful place and that people as a whole are good. The morning after the US election, those ideals took a bit of a hit.
Ok, a big hit.
I went back and forth on writing this because we’re inundated with news of the election. I also didn’t want to be divisive – the world is already divided enough right now. And we’re all really sick of it. Plus, there are people far more knowledgeable than me examining this from every angle.
But dammit, I have a few things to say.
I’m fairly liberal and when I was having conversations about this with some people – primarily strangers (remember when you were told not to talk to strangers? Oh the irony) – I was told one too many times that I watched too much CNN. Which grates my nerves to no end because it undermines me as an intelligent, educated, (and often even fact-checking) woman. It completely dismisses how I feel and think about something.
I’m heartbroken that Trump was elected. Take Hilary, and her flaws and un-likability out of it for a moment. Trump, to me, as not just the president-elect but even as a candidate is completely unacceptable. Who ran a campaign of hateful, misogynistic, racist, xenophobic rhetoric. And I say that not because I’ve been taken in by propaganda – I say that because of things I’ve heard HIM say.
Real, recorded, on-the-record words that he has spoken.
And the reactions. I saw the people and the media treat this as if it were a cavalier thing. A minor transgression.
I’m heartbroken about the message this sends the world. I’m heartbroken about the message this sends my friends and neighbours, who are a variety of ethnicities and call a variety of countries home. I’m heartbroken for me, and my sisters, because of the message this sends us as women.
I’m personally heartbroken because this man is the embodiment of every man who thought he could talk over me. Every man who thought I didn’t know my place. Who thought my value was the measure of how I looked.
Who thought my body was public property.
I’m heartbroken to live in a world that would elevate a man like this to power – for any reason.
I’ve done a lot of drinking, and a bit of thinking, in the time since. I’ve come to some sort of a conclusion. All I can say is this: Hate can’t beat hate. Anger won’t cancel out anger. Fear only breeds more fear.
We have to love louder and harder and brighter than those who hate.
If you are saddened by what you see – go out and bring some love and kindness into the world to balance it out a little. Walk an old lady across the street. Rescue a cat from a tree. Hug an immigrant.
As someone brilliant once said, be the change you want to see in the world.
PS – This made me cry. One of the best things I’ve read since the election.
PPS – We have to have empathy for those whose opinions differ from our own. We won’t solve anything by ignoring them, or dismissing them as ‘backwards’, ‘outdated’, ‘redneck’, etc. The world is teetering on the edge of a dangerous precipice and we must start talking. We can’t hope to make things better if we can’t understand the other side.
PPPS – You should always get someone’s permission before hugging them.
PPPPS – Or so I’ve been told.